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Sotheby's New York announces highlights from its Modern and Contemporary Latin American sale
Joaquín Torres-García, Grafismo Infinito, est. $600/800,000. Photo: Sotheby's.

NEW YORK, NY.- The Latin American Art Modern & Contemporary sale on 28 and 29 May 2014 will feature outstanding examples from many of the major art movements of the 20th century. The sale is led by a magnificent group of Cubist, Constructivist, Concrete, and Geometric works from Mexico, Brazil, Uruguay, and Venezuela. Other highlights include an early Cubist Diego Rivera painting and a large-scale constructivist Joaquín Torres-García from 1937. The Cuban Vanguardia section includes pieces by Mario Carreño and Cundo Bermũndez, while Contemporary artists such as Arturo Herrera and Vic Muñiz are also represented. The pre-sale exhibition opens on Saturday 24 May.

Escritura Anne from 1966 by Jesús Rafael Soto is a rare example from the early Escrituras or ‘hand writing’ series in which wire letters are suspended in front of the nylon strings (est. $500/700,000). The effect of these letters in space is to create some of the most lyrical and suggestive works ever made by the artist. Soto’s Virtual Blanco from 1979 (est. $300/400,000) and the colorful Ambivalencia En El Espacio Nº 23 (est. $300/400,000) are also featured in the sale.

This section of the auction also includes a work that is one of starting points of Carlos Cruz-Diez’s artistic career, Fisicromía in which he experimented with theories of light animated by the composition dialogue between formal and informal materials (est. $200/300,000). Other highlights from the Venezuelan master include Physichromie Nº 230 (est. $150/200,000) and Physichromie 2178 from 1986 (est. $250/350,000).

Joaquín Torres-García‘s Grafismo Infinito dates from a ground breaking period in the artists career (est. $600/800,000). By 1937 he was living in Montevideo and the painting is similar to the Cosmic Monument he built in that city the following year from engraved square and rectangular granite stone slabs,

Lygia Clark is represented in the sale by one of her signature folding sculptures Bicho-Em-Si-Md (Nº IV) which appears at auction as a major retrospective opens at the Museum of Modern Art, New York (est. $400/600,000).

Matta leads the surrealist section of the sale with Morphologie Psychologique which dates from the crucial 1938-9 period when he built on the legacy of older members of the Surrealist group such as Tanguy, Miró, and Ernst to create visionary works through the unconscious movement of the pencil or brush (est. $2.5/3.5 million).

The important Leonora Carrington work The Magus Zoroaster Meeting His Own Image in the Garden (Brothers in Babylone) evokes the magical, fantastic and imaginary world so typical of Carrington and was given by the artist to her friends Maurice Henry and Leonora Cardiff in 1960 (est. $150/250,000).

El Muchacho Del Violón from 1990 is one of the final works created by Rufino Tamayo during his long career (est. $800,000/1.2 million). The brilliantly effective composition with a triangle created by a violin neck, tail piece, and bow coupled with the abstract background of flag-like horizontal stripes is a powerful testimony of the artist´s perfect control of his craft at the end of his career. Other Tamayo works in the sale include the mid-career Hombre Perseguido (The Hunted Man) from 1956 (est. $600/800,000) and La Venus Dorada from the prior year (est. $500/600,000).

Mario Carreño’s Retrato de María Luisa Goméz-Mena depicts his first wife, an important patron of the arts who founded and avant-garde publishing house and is sometimes referred to as ‘Cuba's Peggy Guggenheim’ (est. $350/450,000). The portrait is one of the key paintings from the Cuban Vanguardia movement and has not been seen in public since 1943.

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